Tag Archives: Child

The Reality: What was actually lost

ParentsPstcrd_052010.jpg

Image by Carolyn_Sewell via Flickr

So, it’s been 621 days, or, 1 year 8 months and 12 days since my children and my world came to a crashing halt.

I keep wondering why I havent healed yet. Why am I still so profoundly damaged and why can I not integrate back into the world with even a minute amount of success. What is wrong with me. I was diagnosed with PTSD  which made me ask myself, does this mean I will never heal. And if I can recover, WHEN?

After beating myself up for failing to get on with life, I figure it might be time to assess the gravity, the magnitude, the reality of what was actually lost.

Before I go on, Please understand, I would have it no other way. The relief I feel knowing that my daughter had the guts to stand up and protect herself by telling her secret is remarkable. I am grateful for her bravery. I’m also relieved that her suffering has come to an end. However, I’m writing this blog post to get a better understanding of why I am having such a hard time healing from what was lost.

During some of my darkest, most painful days I recall describing what I was experiencing like this…

My husband was murdered, my daughter was raped, my home was set on fire, my job was terminated, my bank account was robbed.

And all of this occurred in one day, in the blink of an eye. I went to bed one night and life was normal. I woke up to find everything I knew and loved had changed. Life from this moment forward would never be the same.

It’s funny because the above description is not exact, but for me, it’s the closest way I can describe how I feel and for the most part it’s the equivalent of the reality.

The Breakdown of what was lost

My husband was murdered

Everyone knows someone who has lost a spouse way to early. About ten years ago my husbands best friend died in a car accident.  Of course we were devastated. After all, our friends had recently married, which we celebrated as a new and exciting beginning of two friends sharing a wonderful life together. In his death, he was buried and honored with a funeral where all of his loved ones were able to pay their respects to the deceased. There was closure. Sure, it was painful to say goodbye to a friend. There was peace in knowing we could visit his grave, place flowers on such a good friends final resting space should we desire.

The bottom line is, I have spent every day since midsummer of the year 2000 with my husband. I truly loved this man with every part of me. I was still in love with him, which is quite remarkable. heck, I’ve been in relationships where the flame is snuffed out, and pretty quickly to. But this wasnt the case with us. I still looked at him with passion, still thought he was the most gorgeous man I’d ever laid eyes on.

No, in reality my husband was not actually murdered. trust me, there is a weird part of me (the part that has never actually experienced what that might be like) that feels like this would be a less painful scenario. Had he been murdered I would have been able to bury the man I loved so deeply. I could still look at him with love. Me and my children could visit his grave and place flowers. A gravestone for me has recently become something tangible that you can go to when the person you held so dear is no longer there. My husband, my children’s father is no longer there. There’s nothing. THERES NOTHING. Just an empty space in my home and in my heart. I feel his absence in the depth of my guts. There’s nothing left but the good memories that swirl around the new and bad memories. I still can’t think of him, talk about him, look at his things, go to sleep next to the spot he occupied, and yes, survive every holiday without feeling the tremendous sense of loss of this person in my life. I miss the man I thought he was. I miss my best friend. I feel like it was my husband who murdered the man I loved.

My daughter was raped

This is such a painful thought that I still have a hard time thinking about it, much less writing candidly about the feeling and emotions that are buried in my mind and heart. And for that reason I’ll simply say… this is self explanatory…and move on to the next item.

My home was set on fire

I see news stories all the time about families displaced by fire. Families that are homeless in the matter of moments. Nothing left of the comforts of home but a heap of smouldering ash. This is tragic and reported as such on the news, usually with a cry for help and where good citizens can send donations to help out the newly homeless.

For my family, our home is on fire, burning just under the surface. It feels like the Alzheimer’s disease for the exiled. without an income, saving my home, my children’s home is useless. we’re just watching it smoke, waiting for the day that it’s all gone. The saddest part is, there aren’t any nor will there ever be any distress calls from the local news media for my family. We will lose our home. My children will lose the last bit of normalcy they have left. Childhood friends, classmates, routines that provide comfort will all be gone. I cannot explain what its like to walk into your house and know that the very sights, smells, and personal space that brings peace and shelters you from the cold hard world, just outside your door will be gone. I don’t know the date but I know its coming.  My husband was ordered to pay the mortgage but he never has and my lawyer didnt push the issue. Because I was and still am absolutely broke, I’m unable to pay my lawyer. The last payment that was made on our family home was april 2010. I’m still in my home but its in foreclosure. I’m not sure how much longer before we are completely homeless.

My job was terminated

My husband and I started our own business in 2006. I took pride in working both with him outside of the home and as the accountant in the home. I wont lie, ive never loved doing receipts. I kinda despised getting all the paperwork prepared for taxes. But I did it, for years I did it. I did love the physical work though. It wasnt to difficult and I really loved going to work with my husband everyday. We were a team. We were business partners. We were best friends who got to hang out every day. I look back on these times fondly and unfortunately so. If I hated the daily grind than maybe that’d be one less good memory to grieve the loss of. Now my everyday is a struggle just to get to the end. Our business was and is a fairly profitable business. We did well for ourselves, making enough to live on and have a bit left over for the fun things in life. We enjoyed entertaining friends at our house, hosting the occasional get-together. He took the business. He was the only one we listed on the LLC. We never paid ourselves paychecks so I couldn’t file for unemployment. It’s as if I havent had a job since 2006. I miss enjoying my day-to-day life. I miss working and I miss the motivation I once enjoyed as a small business owner.

My bank account was robbed

Within the first week after the discovery and while I was still in shock at my mothers house, my husband cleared out our bank account. I had not a dollar to my name and three kids to support. This has not changed and I don’t expect that it will. He took every dime that we together made and saved and left me with nothing. I went to sleep one night with a certain degree of financial security and woke up to find I couldn’t even buy toilet paper. “I couldn’t even buy toilet paper” it’s what everyone who is running low on cash says…I had to steal toilet paper from a gas station bathroom. It’s not an exaggeration, it was our reality and it was humiliating. As something ive kept a secret from everyone I know including my children, its something I still cringe privately over.

So, what’s next

When I look at the list above it reads like the Holmes and Rahe stress scale, seriously. How much stress can one person suffer before they break? I’ll paste a link I found to a site where you can do a quick assessment. I don’t need to do the assessment to know that I’ve had a multitude of stressful life changing events happen in a short amount of time but after reading over it ive decided I need to get myself back into therapy. Heres the list:

Choose Life Events In the last 2 years, did any of the following happen in your life?

  • Minor violations of the law
  • Major holidays
  • Vacation
  • Major change in number of family get-togethers
  • Change in eating habits
  • Major change in sleeping habits (a lot more or a lot less than usual)
  • Taking on a loan (car,etc.,)
  • Major change in social activities (clubs,movies,visiting,etc.)
  • Major change in usual type and/or amount of recreation
  • Major change in church or temple activity (i.e.. a lot more or less than usual)
  • Major changes in working hours or conditions
  • Changes in residence
  • Changing to a new school
  • Trouble with boss
  • Revision of personal habits (dress manners, associations, quitting smoking)
  • Major change in living condition
  • Spouse beginning or ceasing work outside the home
  • Beginning or ceasing formal schooling
  • Outstanding personal achievement
  • Major change in responsibilities at work
  • Son or daughter leaving home
  • Trouble with in-laws
  • Foreclosure on a mortgage or loan
  • Taking on a mortgage (for home, business, etc.)
  • Change in number of arguments with spouse
  • Change to a different line of work
  • Death of close friend
  • Change in financial state
  • Sexual Difficulties
  • Gaining a new family member(ie.,birth,adoption)
  • Major business readjustment
  • Older adult moving in
  • Pregnancy
  • Change in the health/behavior of a family member
  • Marital reconciliation with mate
  • Retirement from work
  • Being fired at work
  • Marriage
  • Personal injury or illness
  • Detention in jail or other institution
  • Death of close family member
  • Marital Separation from mate
  • Divorce
  • Death of spouse

Read more: Life Stressors Chart http://www.medindia.net/patients/calculators/life_stressor.asp#ixzz1gZweOThD

I don’t know how long my pain will be so raw but I pray that it wont be forever.

Preventing Child Sexual Abuse-An Adult’s Responsibility

Preventing Child Sexual Abuse-An Adult’s Responsibility

http://annyjacoby.wordpress.com/2011/05/02/preventing-child-sexual-abuse-an-adults-responsibility/

I have taken Darkness to Lights prevention program. Unfortunately it was after the fact. I am now a STEWARD FOR CHILDREN and encourage anyone who reads this post to visit the links to both the article I’ve quoted below written by Anny Jacoby, A Personal Safety Expert and Coach. You will also find a vast amount of helpful links and resources on her site.

ReBlogged article from Anny Jacobys website:

In the past thirty years the field of investigation, identification, and treatment for children who have experienced sexual abuse has progressed and changed tremendously.  But child sexual abuse prevention had remained relatively unchanged—teach kids about good touch/bad touch, tell them to say no, and teach them to tell a trusted adult if something happens.  But this set of strategies puts a weighty burden on the slender shoulders of children.  Most people who sexually abuse children are not only known to the child but trusted by the child and their family.  Teens and adults who abuse children can easily confuse and shame a child into silence.  Most victims of child sexual abuse do not disclose their abuse; leaving the victims to struggle alone with the emotional fall-out from the abuse.

Darkness to Light has developed a child sexual abuse prevention training, Stewards of Children, that puts the burden of preventing child sexual abuse on the shoulders of adults.  Stewards of Children aims to teach the facts about child sexual abuse and increase the protective behaviors of adults.  It encourages adult participants to learn the facts about child sexual abuse, to review the policies and procedures of the child serving agencies and communities of which they are a part, and encourages all child serving staff know what to do if a child discloses abuse to them.

The reality of child sexual abuse is hard to face in both its prevalence (some experts estimate that 1-4 girls and 1-6 boys are sexually abuse before their 18th birthday) and its impact.  The Chapel Hill-Carrboro and the Chatham YMCA, North Carolina has decided to face the harsh reality of child sexual abuse and has started the YMCA Community Coalition for Awareness and Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse.  Community awareness meetings (Prevent Now!, one hour) are available as well as Darkness to Light prevention training, Stewards of Children, (2.5-3 hours) for interested community groups (day/evening and weekend training available).

continue reading this article here…

Preventing Child Sexual Abuse-An Adult’s Responsibility

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release
April 01, 2010

Presidential Proclamation — National Child Abuse Prevention Month

A PROCLAMATION

Our children are our most valuable resource, and they need our support to thrive and grow into healthy, productive adults. During National Child Abuse Prevention Month, we renew our unwavering commitment to protecting children and responding to child abuse, promoting healthy families, and building a brighter future for all Americans.

Every child deserves a nurturing family and a safe environment, free from fear, abuse, and neglect. Tragically, sexual, emotional, and physical abuse threaten too many children every day in communities across our Nation. Parents, guardians, relatives, and neighbors all share a responsibility to prevent these devastating crimes, and our government plays a critical role as well.

My Administration is committed to helping future generations succeed. We are focused on engaging parents in their children’s early learning and development, ensuring the safety and well-being of all families, and creating opportunities for all Americans. We are also partnering with Federal, State, and local agencies to better coordinate early childhood services and improve the lives of young children and their families.

Together, we can ensure that every child grows up in a safe, stable, and nurturing environment, free from abuse and neglect. I encourage all Americans to visit: www.ChildWelfare.gov/Preventing to learn what they can do to stop child abuse in their communities.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2010 as National Child Abuse Prevention Month. I call upon all Americans to observe this month with programs and activities that help prevent child abuse and provide for children’s physical, emotional, and developmental needs.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.

BARACK OBAMA

 

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/presidential-proclamation-national-child-abuse-prevention-month

Give the Gift of Innocence

http://www.d2l.org/site/c.4dICIJOkGcISE/b.6296313/k.7445/Give_the_Gift_of_Innocence.htm

 

 

http://www.stopitnow.org/resources_comprehensive

My dad is an abusive alcoholic…

Reblog:

http://nolongeravictim.tumblr.com/page/5

bonesandpetals asked: first and foremost, this blog is absolutely beautiful.
what i’ve been through is minor in comparrison to most peoples story, but reguardless its still chil abuse. my dads an abusive alcoholic and is hooked on various drugs, for my entire childhood he negelected my brother and i, until about two years ago. he now swaps between hitting my brother and threatening me, to telling us he loves us entirely and our mother couldnt care less because we’re unimportant to her.

i think the people that are telling you to stop talking about child abuse are narrow-minded, and pathetic. people should know about whats going on around them, and i have so much respect for making this blog. keep at it, no matter what anyone says<3

Thank you for being brave & sharing your story. Have you done anything about the abuse?

and…THANK YOU!

much love & support

xx

Posted at 2:46 PM Permalink ∞

Just maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll die.

 Reblogged From:

http://nolongeravictim.tumblr.com/page/2

 

  

 

Anonymous asked: I walk away every time he tries to hug me. Every time he gets close to me, I squirm away. He hasn’t touched me. But he makes me feel uncomfortable. I take the blade that’s in my bathroom and I hold it to my wrist. I pray that maybe, this time, I’ll cut too deep and not have to deal with this anymore.
Just maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll die.

 

Oh, please don’t do that! You are so worth being alive. Tell somebody that he makes you uncomfortable, he should be the one hurting for it, not you. You deserve to live without wanting to die & having to deal with this. You shouldn’t have to choose between being afraid or death. You don’t have to.

much love!

xx

 

Posted at 1:27 AM Permalink ∞

Is it sexual abuse if…

Reblogged From:

http://nolongeravictim.tumblr.com/

 

Anonymous asked: is it sexual abuse if a girl made me touch her?

Yes, it is.

Posted at 3:05 AM Permalink ∞

Gallery

No Longer A Victim has A Place For Survivors

Image via Wikipedia Someone I love was abused. They chose to stop their personal hell, and came out & became a hero, a survivor. Them being so courageous and coming forward caused more people I know to acknowledge or confess … Continue reading

Bittersweet

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Today was absolutely a Bittersweet day. It was a DSS court day so going in I already knew I would walk out in a funk regardless of what the court had to say. There really is nothing about this process that gives me peace. It has, since day 1, felt like a no win situation. Even if the small victories offer a bit of relief, that relief is always accompanied by sorrow. I guess you could say it was a good day in hell. Dss has stepped out of the picture and the court ordered that I have full custody of the my children and that my husband remain under the restraining order and is to have no contact. This was all based on the sex offender assessment and therapy plan he had to do. The court also ordered that he would have to seek custody privately and only after the doctor who is overseeing his therapy and treatment plan has determined that he is no longer a risk to the children. They said that it was not the doctors/therapist recommendation at this time to reunite him and the children. Its my understanding that he has to continue therapy and has been required to complete it before he can seek any kind of reunification. Bittersweet…my youngest child is not a direct victim of his crime but she is indeed a victim of his actions, this will be painful for her.

The good news: it may be a turning point for me. For the first time since april 2, 2010 I can honestly say that I’m starting to look forward with guarded hope (but hope none the less) as opposed to viewing my life in rewind. I can’t say that I won’t be looking back anymore, but maybe not as much as I’ve become accustomed to.